Here’s an unpopular truth: Your marketing strategy isn’t really about you.
Your marketing strategy is about your customers.
Relationships with your customers and prospects, like most relationships, thrive with communication. One key component of communication is listening. “But how can I listen when the conversation is one sided?” I hear you. But whether in a blog or a LinkedIn shared update, you can still make your customer feel listened to.
Know your audience
First, know who they are. This is where Buyer Personas come in. It’s an exercise we complete to identify our target customers, so that all the content we create is focused on their top concerns, challenges, and solutions to help achieve their goals. Once we know who we are marketing to, we can tailor our content to our target customers.
Once you clearly understand who you’re creating content for, you can start to customize the type of content you create. To be sure you’re sharing the right kind of content, put yourself in your customer’s shoes. We identify this as the buyer journey; this is the path your buyers take while they are deciding to make a purchase, or according to Hubspot, “the active process a buyer goes through leading up the purchase to solve a problem they have.”
Here’s the trick:
Remove yourself from the conversation
It’s not all about you. This is where we consider the Buyer Journey. Here’s the kicker: You have nothing to do with this. The Buyer Journey is the active process a buyer goes through leading up the purchase to solve their problem. Basically we just want to know how they are going about the research and buying process today not knowing anything about you or your product.
Breaking down the Buyer Journey
The Buyer Journey is best broken into 3 stages.
Awareness: In this stage, your prospect realizes a problem exists and starts understanding it better. They notice symptoms and are usually seeking educational content about the problem. They’re looking for vendor-neutral information that’ll help them move from problem awareness to solution awareness.
Consideration: Buyers in this stage have discovered what their exact issue is, and are searching for content to help them start evaluating different solutions available to them. At this point, they’re most focused on solutions and comparisons.
Decision: Now, they’ve decided how they’ll solve their problem and are comparing solutions. They’re seeking validation in selecting a final vendor before making a definite purchase decision. They need (and want!) you to help close the deal.
To see the best success with your content, you should consider where your buyers are on this path, then create content that will be most relevant to them. In other words, meet them where they are, and help them move along the path.
We call this content mapping, and it’s what we’ll talk about in our next post. However, as a general rule, your content should help your prospects overcome their challenge and achieve their goals.
If you have any questions about how to go about identifying your buyer personas and buyer journey, feel free to connect with me.